Clamp

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A Clamp is a robot type that focuses its efforts on grabbing, holding and controlling its opponent in battle.


Clamps are either used as a method of offense such as overturning (vertical clamp) or moving into arena hazards/pits/out of play, or used as a method of holding an opponent in one place as a means of bringing other weapons into play, either as part of the clamp itself or as a separate weapon.

An example of how an effective clamp can work

First, the bot to be flipped (Flip Test Dummy in this case), goes up the wedge, sustaining a bit of damage on the cutting teeth, and the flipper and hammer both fire.

FoF Timeline 1.jpg

Flip Test Dummy is lifted by the flipper and held in place by the hammer, which is attached to the flipper.

FoF Timeline 2.jpg

Flip Test Dummy is thrown up into the air as it slips out of the grasp of Fight or Flight, which scores more points from the frenZy hammer.

FoF Timeline 3.jpg

Flip Test Dummy achieves liftoff and flies high into the air.

FoF Timeline 4.jpg

A very good example of the weapon in use is at the start of the match between Fight or Flight and Gravity DSL in BBEANS 2.


Notable RA2 examples:

  • Wrecking Crew - Vertical Clamp (first Clamp robot to win a BOTM ; November 2009)
  • Fight or Flight - Vertical Clamp (first known DSL Clamp robot)
  • Guard Duty - Vertical Clamp (first DSL Clamp robot in an AI pack)
  • Little Metal Friend - Horizontal Clamp (powered by servos in theory, but the AI bindings were changed.)
  • That Darn Dustpan! - Vertical Clamp (replica. It has a sawblade on the clamping arm, and uses Little Metal Friend's .py file successfully.)
  • Hugs Aren't Fruit At All - Horizontal Clamp (One of the Most successful Horizontal Clamps in competition placing 3rd in Wheely Tag)


Notable Real Life examples:

  • Complete Control - Vertical Clamp
  • Tough as Nails - Horizontal Clamp

Pros&Cons

PROS:

  • Crowd pleaser
  • Good opponent control ability : can render bots immobile
  • Capable of flipping and doing damage at the same time
  • Powerful flipping ability

CONS:

  • Complex design : requires a lot of weight
  • Usually requires human driving to be effective
  • Small weapon profile (usually)
  • Fragile weapon system
  • Poor performers in tournaments